WARNING: Spoilers ahead for the Preacher TV and comic series. Proceed with caution.
In Episode 2 of Preacher, we experienced somewhat of a confusing, strange and cold opening. Instead of returning to Jesse Custer and present-day Annville, Texas, we were instead transported to 1881 and the Old West where we met a man currently only known as "The Cowboy." As the opening scene progressed, The Cowboy passed a tree with a number of scalped Native Americans hanging from it and a sign for the "Towne of Ratwater," before ending very mysteriously.
So who was this man, and what exactly does he have to do with the plot of Preacher? Allow me to fill you in.
Who Was That Mysterious Cowboy?
If it annoyed you that we never got a name for The Cowboy in this week's episode, I've got bad news: We never will. Instead, The Cowboy will soon become known as the Saint of Killers. Pretty badass, right? The Saint is a pretty important character in the Preacher comics and his origin and purpose is also very interesting. Not to mention that if the comic series is anything to go by, we will be seeing the Saint of Killers for a long time to come.
How Did He Go From 'The Cowboy' To 'The Saint Of Killers'?
While we don't know too much about the Saint's past, we do know that he fought in the Civil War for the Confederacy. Not only did he fight, but he he was known for being one of the most fearsome and violent soldiers on the battlefield. Following the war, the man continued with his bloodthirsty ways, becoming a bounty hunter and collecting Native American scalps. One day during a raid on an Apache village, he rescued a woman who was being held captive. The two eventually fell in love and were married. After the birth of their child, the man softened his heart and changed his ways — at least, for a little while.
When his wife and daughter were taken ill, the man set out to collect medicine for the pair, but was held up by Gumbo McCready and his gang in the town of Ratwater. After insulting the gang, they set an ambush for the man — who fights them and wins. However, the fight delays his return to his wife and daughter, and he arrives home to find them both dead. After burying his family, the man sets out to return to Ratwater, bent on revenge.
Once the man made it back to Ratwater, McCready had almost total control over the town. As the man rode into town, McCready's men tried to stop him, but he killed them all. In a bid to save himself, McCready used an innocent civilian as a human shield, and after the man shot through her (hoping the bullet would also kill McCready) his gun jammed. McCready managed to knock the man down and jam the blade of a shovel through his chest, killing him. Because the man had killed an innocent, there was only one place his soul could end up: hell.
Once the man reached hell, his desire for revenge didn't abate, and his cold heart was so icy it even managed to freeze hell over. Luckily, the man froze hell at the same time that the Angel of Death admitted to the devil (over a game of poker) that he was unhappy with his job. The man was offered a deal: He would be allowed to return to Earth to take revenge on McCready if he also took on the Angel of Death's responsibilities — collecting the souls of those who died by violence. After the man agreed to the deal, the Angel of Death melted down his sword to forge two magical Walker Colt revolvers for him. From then on he was known as the Saint of Killers.
What Does He Have To Do With Jesse?
We'll find out that the mysterious, shadowy force that entered Jesse and allows him to command people is actually known as Genesis. Because Jesse now has this powerful ability, which is on par with the word of God, the angels summon the Saint to fulfill his obligation to God and track down Custer to kill him. Obviously, because of Jesse's abilities, he's not as easy to kill as the Saint would like, and the Saint even has a begrudging respect for him.
There's plenty more in store for us in regard to the Saint and Jesse. However, given that we're only three episodes into the season, it seems hasty to reveal them all at once. Rest assured that we're going to see much, much more of The Cowboy (soon to be the Saint), and it's all going to be amazing.
What do you think of Preacher so far?
Source: Comic Vine